I enjoy gardening because I love flowers and bringing in fresh herbs for cooking and making salads. It is a thrill for me to cut a large bunch of flowers to make colorful bouquets of scent for our home or to share with friends. What I enjoy the most about our garden is the quiet I find when I’m out there working on my own. It is like a safe haven where I can think and pray as I deadhead my roses or tame the wildness out of a plant that threatens to overtake some of its neighbors. I was on such a mission late yesterday afternoon as I cut back some climbing roses so heavy with blooms that the trellis could not hold their weight. Totally absorbed by what I was doing, I forgot there was a robins nest in amongst the thorny rose growth. Suddenly I came upon it and discovered four very large robin fledglings staring right back at me! When they first hatched they raised such a ruckus wanting to be fed that I had since avoided disturbing them. I was stunned, not just that they were there but that they were so quiet! As I stepped away from the nest, I looked up and saw “Dad Robin” patiently perched on the roof of our garage waiting (I assume) for me to leave. I was impressed by the wisdom God had built into His creatures as they waited so quietly for danger to pass.
This morning I remembered the quietness of those fledgling robins as I contemplated Lamentations 3:25 & 26,
“The Lord is good to those whose hope is in Him, to the one who seeks Him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.”
Too often we flutter and want to fly away to some other place when we encounter trouble in the garden of our lives. We complain because of the unfairness of what someone has said or done and sometimes make the problem worse with our complaints. What I think Jeremiah is saying (and the robins example of quiet wisdom in the face of possible danger showed me) is that there comes a time when it is better to focus more on our Provider and less on our momentary pain. We learn from Jeremiah that, as we wait and focus on Him, we discover Hope as a friend who encourages us in our waiting. It is when Hope enters that we can offer thanks to God, even though our circumstance has not changed. Zephaniah 3:17 offers us a precious reminder of the tender relationship that is ours as we entrust our sorrows to our Creator’s care:
“The Lord your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”
No matter how trying life becomes, there is always room for Hope in God’s Son. Where there is Hope, there is a basis for giving thanks. Where there is thanksgiving, we discover a quietness of mind and heart as we are comforted by His love.
I went out this evening to check on those four fledgling robins and found the nest empty with no sign of them around. I had to smile as I thought about those nest-bound birds discovering flight within hours of when I saw them. There wouldn’t be any sign of me either!
Quietly to His Glory!